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What Receiver can I get for $700?

 

Bronze Member
Username: Ben805

Post Number: 31
Registered: Aug-04
I'm looking for new receiver, primarily use for Music(90%) and occationally Movie(10%), and consider the following option:

1)Any cheap 5.1~7.1 av receiver as preamp + Dual Outlaw M-200 monoblock: the monoblock will be use for the main(Axiom M22ti), the rest of the channels will be run off of the cheap receiver.

2)Cambridge Audio azur 540R 6.1 AV Receiver

3)Harman Kardon AVR 630.

4)Marantz SR6400


As you can see I much prefer warmer sounding receivers, beside those 4...is there any other options I can consider? I do not like the Yamaha, Onkyo, and Denon...they are a bit too harsh to my ears.

 

Silver Member
Username: Rh1

Post Number: 263
Registered: Jun-04
I would say stick with those you mention, they are wonderful receiver in their own right
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 635
Registered: Dec-03
Benjamin:

You should add the NAD T743 to your list, as well. For the price, it is a very impressive piece of gear--very smooth and crystal clear in its presentation.

You are right about the Denon, Yamaha and Onkyo, IMO, so avoid them.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Bobby29

Baltimore, MD USA

Post Number: 53
Registered: Apr-04
Last month I picked up a Pioneer Elite 53TX for $799 from an authorized dealer. It's being replaced with a 54TX, so if you can still find one, you may be able to get a really good price.

So far I am very happy with it. It is definitely not harsh, and matches well with my MA S6's.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Ben805

Post Number: 32
Registered: Aug-04
Initially I'd also considered NAD, but I've been reading lots of their QC issues, hissing noise, channel burned up and all those horror stories, it's kinda scary....
 

Silver Member
Username: Bleustar

Pensacola, Florida

Post Number: 147
Registered: Jul-04
the Cambridge Audio Azur 540r is the best sounding receiver on your list.

NAD does seem to have more quality issues that come up on this board than other brands. Very impressive sound though from the T753 on up.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 639
Registered: Dec-03
Benjamin:

I have had an NAD T753 now for almost a year. It has constant use and I have not had a single issue. It is dead quiet when there is no program material and incredibly dynamic and engaging when program material is present. I have not heard a single noise, pop, or hiss. It has been the best purchase I have made in the past 30 years. I highly recommend it. And, when we have had threads where people have had complaints, at least in the USA, the response from NAD has been very impressive, such as the case where an NAD tech met the customer at the airport to collect the receiver with the problem and took it back to NAD where it was fixed and shipped back. I can't think of any other large brand that remotely goes that far.

As is always the case, the first contact when you have a problem is the dealer. If the dealer is no good, then you are going to get poor service. When that happens, and the customer needs to bypass the dealer, is when I have read great stories on this board about how responsive NAD is. No one should put up with a defective product, but it is really the responsibility of the dealer to make good on the situation. Unfortunately, there are too many that view themselves as "order takers" rather than dealers and they fail to report the problem properly to the manufacturer and then throw up their hands saying "its not my fault!" A good dealer will work with the manufacturer to identify the problem and come up with a solution--even if that means a full replacement.

I must say that a lot of times it simply reflects when you check into this board. We have had horror stories about every major brand without exception, so it is not limited to NAD. Last summer seemed to be "beat up on Marantz" time. Other periods have reflected badly upon Onkyo, Denon, Yamaha, and Sony. So I would say that if you know a good NAD dealer, I would not let one or two threads lead me to an untrue generalization.

Finally, as complicated as HT receivers are today (don;t forget, they have computers built into them now--they aren't an all analog stereo receiver from the 1970s), the one issue that is always overlooked is the poor quality of electricity. I have been involved in a number of cases where electrical utlities have been sued and damages paid when electrically powered equipment was damaged by the noisy and poorly regulated electrical power supplied by some utilities in this country. If you live in the City of Los Angeles, for instance, the power system was designed in 1923 and has not been significantly updated since. It is a design that was determined to be obsolete in the 1940s, but they have never changed it. Amazing to me. I would never power any HT gear without a good electrical noise suppression unit like those offered by Panamax or Monster Power.

For a sub-$1K receiver, you simply cannot find better sound than NAD, IMO. The Cambridge is very good, but still takes second to the NAD sound.

Good luck!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Ben805

Post Number: 33
Registered: Aug-04
thanks for the great advice, I'll definitely take a serious look at the NAD, especially the T743 and T753 and audition them, the power rating of those two units are a tard low but how do they compare to the Outlaw audio? I was told the Outlaw has the punch and full sounding of Marantz but also has the clarity and detail of Rotel?
 

Silver Member
Username: Falp

Post Number: 102
Registered: Mar-04
I would stick to the NAD and Marantz options...

I'm a 80/20 music/movies man and Marantz are great!
 

Silver Member
Username: Smitty

Canada

Post Number: 136
Registered: Dec-03
I have to second Hawk's opinion about NAD. I've had a NAD T742 myself for about a year now and the sound quality is far ahead of anything else I've heard in it's price range for music. Specifically, I find the placement of vocals and instruments very nice. It's also very strong in the midrange and bass reproduction. I believe it is sensitive to power line fluctuations though, which happen quite frequently for me living in the boonies. I haven't had any problems since I plugged it into a voltage regulator. I've also read quite a few good reviews of the CA 540R as well but have not heard one myself.

If you're really hesitant about NAD I'd suggest waiting until the Outlaw 1070 receiver becomes available - the current guess is end of year. Ideally you could order an Outlaw 1070 and borrow a NAD receiver from a dealer at the same time to compare them. You'd have to pay return shipping if you liked the NAD better than the Outlaw but at least then you'd know.

As for the power ratings, if you looking for something to play at teenager party levels without any distortion the T742 and presumably T743 is not it - but it does have a soft clipping switch in case you do have teenagers ;)

Personally, I've found the sound excellent at low, moderate and "reasonably" loud levels.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Kano

Post Number: 34
Registered: Oct-04
Here's a factory re-manufactured HK AVR-7000-Z for $600

http://www.harmanaudio.com/search_browse/product_detail.asp?urlMaterialNumber=AV R7000-Z&status=

and a re-manufactured HK AVR-8000-Z for $900

http://www.harmanaudio.com/search_browse/product_detail.asp?urlMaterialNumber=AV R%208000-Z&status=

The 8000 is THX certified and retailed for $3000 new.

I have the AVR430 for about the same price and am wishing I found this a year ago.
 

New member
Username: Sound4bargain

Post Number: 4
Registered: Oct-04
Hawk
I agree the sound of the NAD is the best but I dont want to see my dealer or NAD rep or support for the next 4 years just listen to music and I am certain a majority of the NADs are good but 2 out of 2 bad is too much. Maybe when a brand gets beaten up they improve quality - check out my post in why not to buy a NAD receiver and I give a lot of reasons on why to buy it
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 653
Registered: Dec-03
Vic:

I don't disagree with what you say--if there is a problem the dealer should fix it, not make it a regular date. If you read my post above, you would see my point that a dealer should work with the technical support department at the factory to identify and solve the problem, not just "taking another look." However, my T753 has been perfect and I have had it almost a year, so my experience gives me no reason not to recommend NAD. Similarly, friends of mine who have gotten an NAD have had no problems, so I again have no reason to believe NAD is not a good choice. Finally, even you have to admit the sound is superior.

I would also note that I have yet to see a post with anyone complaining about the T743, which appears to be well built and very clean sounding. It would be a superb choice for Benjamin as it can be had for under $600. I happen to think it is the best bargain in a receiver currently on the market.

Have you tried a line conditioner for your NAD receiver?
 

New member
Username: Sound4bargain

Post Number: 5
Registered: Oct-04
Hawk,

I agree for sound the NAD is the best in this price range, I heard the T743 and it out performed a Yamaha 2400 HK 635 and Pioneer 54TX. I got the T753 instead and still paid less than any of these units. If I was to listen to 90% music or had the choice to use 5.1 inputs from my DVD player I would keep the NAD. But I have a 70/30 music movie split and 2 kids who watch movies so the TV gets the analog inputs so receiver is not required just switch on the TV. The biggest problem I faced is that I listen to 2 channel muisc from my digital cable which is dolby and the moment the Decoder switches on the hum kicks in through the rear channels near my listening position extremley annoying at kids are a sleep low volume. The Yamaha also has a superb headphone virtual surround for movies at night while the NAD should not even put a headphone jack

Now if Benjamin is 90% music or if he can use analog 7.1 inputs to the NAD for the movies and multichannel music I would say get the NAD. My $140 pioneer DVD player actually did a superb job of decoding and outputting 5.1 and provided better sound than the NADs decoder and all hum and hiss was missing. I just could not use this setup as it killed the 2 channel downmix to the TV and my kids were mad. Now if its 2 channel music you want get a NAD integrated amp C372 very stable machines and just listen to movies in virtual suuround from the DVD player. Now Benjamin already has monoblocks for his front channels so he gets his sound quality and the harsh Yamaha, Denon etc have better DSP and frills than the NAD. This is the setup I am opting for though I have not heard how these units will act as pre/pros the feedback I have is they are good, my NAD 270 will be in on Tuesday and I will tell you how that sounds. Benjamin if you can go find a dealer who will set up one of these harsh sounding receivers as a pre/pro to a quality amp go listen - I just could not find one so I have to experiment at home. These receivers do have a lot more frills as compared to the NAD and some do get used. It also depends on how much of your music is multichannel and on the rest of your speakers.
 

Unregistered guest
The T743 has reported problems:
https://www.ecoustics.com/electronics/forum/home-audio/92714.html
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